A BEWDLEY school has raised more than £4,000 to help build a new school in the Dominican Republic for Haitian refugees.

The children at The Bewdley School and Sixth Form Centre raised this through a number of activities including a non-uniform day and sponsored sports activities.

Julie Reilly, headteacher, said: “We decided to support the team of 11 people from Bewdley Baptist Church who are going to build houses for the homeless Haitian refugees in the Dominican Republic.

“After we contacted the church, they found out that a new school was being built in one of the new villages and that the school was desperately short of funds.

“The school called The Nest of Love helps educate over 200 children who live in an area where there are 1,500 children with no local government funded education.”

The team from the Baptist Church are flying out tomorrow to work on a building site for two weeks.

Like all other volunteers on this project, they are paying for their own flights and accommodation, which comes to more than £15,000.

In addition to the money from the school, the team has raised more than £10,000, with every penny going to build new houses for people who currently live in shanty towns.

As well as support from their Baptist Church, they have raised funds through bric-a-brac and car boot sales, a promises auction, a Caribbean meal and an R&B concert.

David Glenn, one of the team members, said: “When we heard about Bewdley School and Sixth Form Centre’s wonderful offer to support us for education use, we contacted Mission Direct, the UK charity that is organizing the trip.

“They informed us that there was a school being built in a new village, but they were desperate for funds towards the building work.

“When we are working in the Dominican Republic, we have arranged to take time off to visit the school, meet the staff and children and take photographs that we can bring back to show the Bewdley children how the money that they raised is being used.”

Simon Harry, pastor at Bewdley Baptist Church, said “When I invited someone from Mission Direct to come along and chat to the congregation, I never expected that so many would be inspired to take up the challenge of both paying to go and more importantly give up their time to work on a building site.

“The support from our local schools, the local community and traders has been fantastic. I do hope that this is only the beginning and that more and more people can go out and make real difference to the poorest and most deserving people in our world.”